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How to get dh motivated

(13 Posts)
Southernfairy85 Mon 26-Sep-16 15:10:02

Not sure how to get dh to buck up his ideas.
Currently he's unemployed and has been for almost a year now (odd jobs here and there). The initial job loss was not his fault and I feel awful for what he has been through but things are horribly tough. I was uber supportive at the start but it's been so long with very little change in the situation.

I have ended up taking a job that has a reduction in salary as I have planned a career change (thankfully my parents have offered support to us so I can do it) but in a few years it will be worth it. It's not an ideal time but I can't put my career on hold until he gets himself sorted.
He however is still struggling to find something. I don’t think he has spent the past few months trying hard enough and have now laid down the law (yes I should have done this sooner but it’s hard when dh is low and I worry that what I say could push him further into depression) I shouldn’t have to push this hard though. Young DD to support, a mortgage, bills to pay.
To top it off he pays in his jobseekers allowance into the joint account but I found out he had bought himself some games for over £25 this week (even after I showed my annoyance at him paying a few £s for some coffee from Costa last week)
I don’t understand what he’s playing at. He claimed that it was his money so he thought it was ok, but considering my wage currently pays for everything (including his phone bill) I am confused about what is going through his mind.
I have obviously now spoken to him and he has said he regrets it and understands he was stupid, but I don’t know how to get him to sort himself out without pushing him over the edge. I feel a bit like a mug at the moment as everyone else says they would have kicked him out by now but I’m not good at being mean (the guilt is always too much)
Any suggestions of how to empower him to do it himself, how to inspire him etc. It’s a tricky line to walk right now and I don’t want my marriage to fall apart.

TheNaze73 Mon 26-Sep-16 15:13:43

There is an outside chance that he may be depressed & too embarrassed to have it diagnosed. My gut feeling however, is he needs a reality check that you're not going to support him indefinitely.

HandmaidsTail Mon 26-Sep-16 15:30:18

I don't think you can do anything.

If he's content to piss your money away on games while his in-laws support his family, I'm not sure there's much you could say that would shame him into action.

BlancheDevereux Mon 26-Sep-16 15:33:43

He's completely irresponsible. He probably doesn't think he needs anyone to motivate him and it likely to be quite happy spending his JSA on games and Costa.
How long have you been married? How old is he?

pocketsaviour Mon 26-Sep-16 15:59:09

Do you think he is depressed?

Back in the 90s I was made redundant and really struggled to find something else, no matter how hard I looked. I found it really hard to deal with and became depressed and demotivated, to the point where continuing to apply for stuff seemed difficult.

If he has absorbed societal messages about he should be being the big man providing for his family then that may also contribute.

I fully understand your frustration though and it's not fair for you to bust your nuts working while he sits on his arse playing Xbox.

adora1 Mon 26-Sep-16 17:25:28

Well get tough OP, your softly softly approach doesn't work on him, he's lazy and is happy to sponge of you and your family then goes out and spends £25 on games for himself, what a cheek!

I'd have given him an ultimatum ages ago, there must be some work he can get, pub work, driving a private hire car, cleaning, anything!

Happybunny19 Mon 26-Sep-16 17:38:08

He is almost certainly depressed. It's so easy to get down after redundancy and periods of unemployment, I've been there myself in the past. I always found my self confidence quickly deteriorated if out of work for even the shortest time, so imagine it's getting him down, it's also quite scary getting back into the job market when you're feeling like this and applying for jobs or going for interviews seems like the last thing you want to do.

Can you offer some support to help him back in the job market? Is his CV up to date and have you read through for him to check if you can add anything or improve his chances? Often your oh is great at talking up your good points better than you do yourself so it could be really beneficial. Has he signed on to any employment agencies? Remind him to push them regularly otherwise they just don't bother calling, pushy people do much better with agencies.

I would definitely recommend he looks at the range of free courses available to him while he's receiving benefits. If his confidence is down this will be great for him to get out, retrain and meet people, plus fill any gaps in his skillset.

Be kind and understanding, but stay firm as he really needs to get back out to work before the gap in employment hinders his chances of getting another job, plus he obviously needs to get back on with helping you support the family. I sympathize with you too though and wish you both luck x

adora1 Mon 26-Sep-16 17:54:10

And I work and I can't afford Costa coffees!

Southernfairy85 Mon 26-Sep-16 21:08:08

He is 30 and married for 3 years (but together for over a decade)
He is currently retraining at the moment to try and get himself a new career.
CV was updated and checked by me months ago as well as covering letters.
I feel I've done nothing but try and support him and get him work and it's drained me.

He's registered with agencies but doesn't bother contacting them no matter how many times I've suggested he should keep on at them. He only seems to do things if I encourage him to and its been like that for months.

I try and get him to do things, he does for a week or so and then it stops. I'm frustrated and fed up now but am aware he must be fragile
He is already on meds from the doctor.

I'm trying to be firm but supportive but it's hard. I work full time, small dd and trying to retrain myself. Dh does the housework at home but there's hundreds of things that could be done around the house that are ignored.

Don't want to push too much but the strain on our relationship is immense!

thesandwich Mon 26-Sep-16 21:12:37

You say he is on meds- has he had or is waiting for counselling? Evidently the gp sees a medical issue and meds may be numbing his depression and drive too.

HeddaGarbled Mon 26-Sep-16 21:30:18

He's on meds from the doctor so presumably he's been diagnosed with depression?

This is a tough time for both of you, probably (hopefully) the toughest time in your marriage. You might want to think about getting some support and advice for yourself. I bet there are online support forums for partners of people suffering from depression. Maybe even a support group you could attend - your GP might be able to point you in the right direction.

I know it's hard, I don't want to be critical and you sound like you are trying really hard to be supportive at the same time as working your arse off holding the whole fragile edifice of your family and home together, but I don't think that telling him off for spending a bit of money on a treat for himself is helpful. It's just going to make him feel even more worthless than he already feels.

He needs to get out of the house and avoid becoming socially isolated so a walk to the local Costa could be a very good thing for him to do.

The retraining is good. Does that involve getting out of the house and interacting with people or is he doing it from home? Can GP offer more than just meds? A support group or some counselling would be useful. Don't be shy of demanding more professional support.

My best wishes to both of you - this is so so hard to cope with flowers

Southernfairy85 Mon 26-Sep-16 21:55:45

He went to group counselling but won't go to individual which I think would be really useful. I think there are issues that he needs to get to the bottom of.
I don't have time for any sessions unfortunately.

His training is from home so no contact except for exams.

He has time to interact with others. He goes out once a week to see friends and once every few months he has a day out doing his hobby.
It's all more than I get so I feel he has more than enough.
I know £25 might not seem much but when I have to budget less than that on food a week it feels like a punch in the gut knowing he thought it was OK to spend that amount on himself when he hasn't put money into the shared pot in a long time.

I've told him that I don't expect him to find work straight away but I expect him to be trying his hardest which I don't think he has been.

There will come a point when he needs something, anything so we have some more money coming in.

I know if we can make it through this we will be stronger but at the moment there is no light at the end of the tunnel.

RunRabbitRunRabbit Tue 27-Sep-16 09:21:11

Have you asked him what he needs to sort this out? Have you asked him what his plans are for the next couple of months?

It has to come from him.

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